Monday Mix and Match

Apologies this Mix and Match is a day late, I got a tad caught up in bank holiday fun here in Ireland. But better late than never as they say! Here’s this week’s fashion, interiors and beauty tidbits….

Beauty

Seventeen "Brow's That!" Brow Kit

Gone be with the days where the thinner the brow, the better. I’m sure there are many of you out there who are only raging with your teenage self for being so enthusiastic with the tweezers! Nowadays, it’s de rigueur to sport brows so thick you’d make Brooke Shields jealous, but thanks to my naturally sparse and light coloured brows, this beauty trend is now both the bane of my life and absolute obsession. I had been using a Seventeen brow pencil combined with a brown powder, which I spoke about as one of my top 5 makeup staples, so when I saw they had brought out an entire kit dedicated to brows I was sold. The Seventeen “Brow’s That!” Brow Kit is one stop shop for strong yet natural brows – a mini version of the original pencil to fill in the colour, a wax to shape and define the hairs, powder to set and soften the brows and even a highlighter for the brow bone. All that comes in a handy compact, avec mirror, making this set serious bang for your buck. This set is only €7.95 and there’s also 3 for 2 at the moment in Boots on all Seventeen products. Perfect if you’re feeling the pinch before payday this month!

Primark Vintage Style Rings

These dazzlers are a major departure from my usual smattering of simple gold rings, but when I saw this pack of three in Penneys/Primark I was instantly drawn to to the rich jewel tones and antique style. What can I say, I will forever have magpie tendencies! Trinkets like these are a fantastic budget wardrobe update – I love how you can have just one striped top or little black dress and entirely change the look with jewellery. Well, that’s definitely my excuse for having several boxes of the stuff! The three rings here were just €3 and look great worn layered up all together, with other simple gold rings or alone as statement pieces. These definitely had the potential to look more lucky bag than vintage shop find, but luckily, these bargain beauties err on the side of the latter – I won’t say anything if you don’t! 😉

Interiors

Free Printable Quote - #GIRLBOSS

I thought I would share this nifty, thrifty little home update. I’m a big fan of DIY and craft blogs, one of my favourites being The Crafted Life, a blog run by Rachel that’s choc full of fun, unusual and inspirational DIY projects. Having recently read, and loved, book of the moment, #Girlboss (I featured it in my very first Mix and Match posts which you can see here), I was positively giddy when I saw Rachel was offering beautifully designed and free printables of two quotes from the book. I opted for “Life is short, don’t be lazy” which I swiftly printed, framed and plonked right on my hall table. It’s a nice reminder to make the most of my evenings and resist the allure of my comfy couch when I get home from work, particularly as the nights draw in and all you want to do is plonk down in front of back to back episodes of Friends – who knew that would never get old, eh?! It doesn’t hurt that it’s written in some pretty snazzy typography, something I can never resist. You can download your own slice of daily motivation here. Enjoy!

Until next time! xx

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Outfit Post: Polka Dot Trousers

Denim Jacket, Graphic Tee and Polka Dot Trousers

Primark Jewellery, vintage style bag, polka dot trousers

This past summer, I conquered my deep rooted fear of a printed, tapered trousers with this printed jumpsuit, but since nothing else has quite taken my fancy enough to make a purchase. But when I saw these polka dot beauties in Penneys/Primark t’other day, my fate was sealed. Ever since I pinned this picture, I’ve been a tad obsessed with procuring a pair of dotty trousers. And whilst I doubt I will ever nail the effortless style and cool insouciance that this lady possesses in wearing her spotted pants, these ones are damn easy, and fun, to style. And only a tenner too – Penneys, you never let me down!

Of course my love of polka dots knows no bounds (as you may be able to tell if you look either side of this here rambling paragraph). It subconsciously translates into almost every aspect of my life – in decorating my home, myself and of course, my little internet space here on The Mix and Match. I’m constantly drawn to anything littered with spots! Partly owed to the fact that when it comes to styling ’em, the world is your sartorial oyster – denim, print, stripes, bright colours, earthy tones, monochrome – I dare you to name something wouldn’t look impossibly chic with a lil’ polka dot or two.

River Island Denim JAcket and Slogan Tee, Penneys Polka Dot Trousers

The shape of these trousers however was still a cause for concern as the looser fit around the bum and ankles were a far cry from my usual skinny jean safety net. And let me tell you, my shape does require any extra volume created with material! So this oversized River Island was the order of the day, helping me feel a little less self-conscious in adjusting once again to this new silhouette. It doesn’t hurt that this cover up is gloriously eighties in it’s bigger cut and acid wash. Hey, a little retro never hurt nobody (mullets and leg warmers, notwithstanding).

Topshop Lipstick in Innocent

I must not have been feeling at all myself this day as I rallied against my natural proclivity to paint my pout with red or fuchsia. Instead I opted for this, decidedly girly, pink shade – a terribly neglected tube of lipstick named “Innocent” from the fabulous Topshop range. I got this as part of an amazing Christmas set last year, which I’m hoping they will have once again! It’s honestly just so easy to wear and even nicer in the flesh, if I do say so myself!  Definitely check out what Toppers has to offer in the cosmetic department next time you’re in your local branch – I wouldn’t have a bad word to say about any product I’ve tried. From lipsticks, to blush, nail varnish and highlighter, I love it all! Have you tried any Topshop makeup products and can recommend? I would love to hear your picks!

Until next time xx

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Monday Mix and Match

Two posts in two days – when did I get so darn productive and good at life?! Taking your photos at the weekend instead of frantically setting up shots in the fast fading Monday evening light really makes a difference. Well that, and eating such a big lunch that you don’t need to cook a complicated dinner! For once, my eyes being bigger than my belly has worked to my advantage, and so here is my timely weekly round-up of fashion, beauty and interiors..

Beauty

Seventeen Phwoarr Paint Concealer in Medium

Seventeen Phwoarr Painte HEavy Duty Concealer

Oh Seventeen; you had me at “heavy duty”. Those clever beauty marketing experts sure know how to appeal to my insecure side, and as I’ve mentioned a number of times before, my under eye bags and dark circles are most certainly a constant bugbear of mine. I posted my recent purchases for this problem area a while back (See that post here) and by now I am coming to the end of my Rimmel Wake Me Up concealer. I ended up really liking it, but I can never resist purchasing something shiny and new. Add that to the fact Seventeen has a 3 for 2 offer in Boots at the moment and there was no doubt I would be swayed to the dark side (that being the side where money you should be saving is instead spent on makeup, to be more specific). I’ve read a fair few reviews of this Seventeen Phwoarr Paint (Top marks for the name!) and, at only €6.99, thought it would be no harm to jump on the bandwagon. I also had my eye on the new brow kit that Seventeen have released so it worked out perfectly. I was spoiled for choice and had a very hard time choosing what extra product to pick up as part of the offer (cue thirty minutes staring at the display overwhelmed by the sheer volume of beauty goodies). In the end I bought another of my favourite gel nail varnishes – I will review that and the brow palette soon!

But onto the concealer – this product does exactly what it says on the tin. It’s heavy duty perfection. I’m talking post hangover, up all night, winter flu, miracle worker! It evens out skin tone and texture and made me look bright eyed and bushy tailed this morning – something I don’t think anyone is on a Monday morningt! The one thing I will say is that it’s so thick and creamy that it had caked slightly by lunchtime, but I buffed it out with my finger and was good as new. A major plus is that it comes in compact form with a mirror – so no worries about trying to reapply using your grainy selfie cam (just me?). I had intended to buy the shade “fair” but sod’s law, they were out of this so I bought the “medium” tone. And it’s absolutely fine, not too dark even on my pale skin, with a lovely salmon/peach tone to colour correct any darkness under the eye. I will give it another week or two of using this before I decide whether to repurchase, but so far, so good! Have any of you tried Seventeen Phwoarr Paint and if so, how did you find it?

Interiors

Vintage French Milking Machine Sign

One of these days I will up sticks and hightail it to the South of France to live out my days surrounded by antiques and lavender fields. Until then, I will just have to bring as much vintage French fabulous-ness into my small Dublin apartment as possible. This sign was a flea market find by my boyfriend’s Mam, who very kindly asked if we would like it for our home– safe to say I said oui oui without any hesitation. I immediately knew I wanted to hang it in the kitchen against our faux brick wallpaper (some day I will have the real thing!). I’m currently trying to research the exact origin of the sign but a quick internet search has informed me that it refers to milking machines – if anyone can shed any further light on this, do let me know! But let’s face it, it could say something impossibly rude and would still seem chic en francais. For now, I’m quite happy that it just looks so pretty and full of history, with its battered metal and muted primary tones.  As Leandra Medine, of Man Repeller fame, would say… am I French yet?

Fashion

Zara Breton Top and Red Roses

Again, am I French yet? Ladies, I am that bit closer to owning the much sought after, holy grail of Breton tops – high neck , thick material and perfect balance of black stripes on white. what else you one expect from that mecca of classic European style; Zara. This was actually a very thoughtful gift from my man chum. He will be mortified, but we celebrated five years together this past weekend and boy does he know me well after all this time – red roses and classic stripes, two things of my favourite things in life. This striped beauty is a slightly over-sized, sweatshirt style, that I can see keeping me cosy and stylish all year round! The perfect wardrobe staple, safe to say I was absolutely chuffed. The bar has definitely been set for Christmas this year – don’t think I’ll get away with a pair of Christmas tree socks and a Terry’s Chocolate Orange this year!

Until next time! xx

Beauty Review: Wet N Wild Colour Icon Palette in Comfort Zone

A few weekends ago myself and my pal Lesley (of beautiful beauty blog Bellinis and Blush!), trotted along to the Clarence Hotel for brunch with Wet n Wild Cosmetics and innovative new Irish website BEUTiFi.com. Let me tell you, there are very few things that would get me up out of my bed before midday on a Saturday but one of those things is definitely make-up…and croissants, anything for croissants! We were spoiled rotten on all fronts – a voucher to use on BEUTiFi.com, a heap of Wet N Wild goodies, hair and make-up demos, and yes, many a pastry too!

First up, if you’re a fashion or beauty addict living in Ireland, BEUTiFi.com is a must visit. Your one stop shop for all things pampering, BEUTiFi provides an incredibly handy website, housing the names and contact details for salons and freelance professionals providing beauty services in a specific area. Absolutely ideal if you’re heading to an unfamiliar place for a hen night or wedding and need to get glam, or even for discovering new and undiscovered beauty meccas in your local area. What are you waiting for guuurls?! They have also launched their own gift voucher which is “one for all” style and can be used in any of the salons listed on the site – perfect for the hard to buy for ladies in your life.

And then came…the make-up! We were provided with a plethora of this season’s Wet N Wild goodies and my gosh, was I a happy little beauty blogger to see the most divine palette in the pile, just crying out to create the most perfect bronze smokey eye..

Wet N Wild Colour Icon Palette - Comfort Zone

Wet N Wild Confort Zone Palette

This palette is nothing short of foolproof. Part of Wet n Wild’s Colour Icons collection, these neutral shades is named “Comfort Zone”. Very apt in that not only does it comprise of beautiful neutral tones to suit every skin tone, it also comes with the locations of exactly where to put each shade on the eye printed on the shadows themselves. Hands up if you ever stared at a eyeshadow palette full of gloriously smokey hues and textures, only to get a bit overwhelmed and do your regular ol’ brown shadow plus liner combo. Guilty as charged! Particularly as I have such fair skin, I find the black and grey smokey eye so often seen just does not work for me…i.e. it ends up looking like I haven’t slept for several days or that I’ve gone ten rounds with Katie Taylor! So I was delighted to see some lovely, brown hues in this little gem of a palette.

Swatches - Wet N Wild Comfort Zone Eyeshadow Palette

The swatches above are the brown toned side of the palette. From left to right: Definer, Crease, Eyelid and Browbone (which you can just about see – didn’t I tell you I was pale!). Aside from it’s paint by numbers approach, hands down the best thing about this palette is the texture of the shadows. Beautiful shimmer, easy to blend and best of all? No fallout. None. Normally I have to spend equally as long as I did putting ON the make-up, fussing at my face with a cotton bud trying to clean up the mess that has found its way onto my under eye area and cheeks. I was pleasantly surprised that this was not the case, and my carefully applied base stayed just that. We are generally advised otherwise in magazine/beauty tutorials, but I always like to apply my foundation, concealer and brows before doing my eye makeup, as it gives me an idea of how strong/what shape to go with on the eyes. But hey, that’s just me! With this palette, it’s certainly a good way to go – a lot less spring cleaning to do afterward! I could only manage to take a photo with my phone so apologies for the quality, but here is my attempt at a darker, bronze eye for night time..

Bronze Smokey Eye, Wet n Wild PaletteFor the most part I stuck to the guide on these shadows and created the look using the following steps:

  • First I applied Mac Paint Pot in “Painterly” all over the eyelid – this is a fantastic, nude coloured product which evens out the tone and texture of eyelid giving a nice smooth blank canvas, if you will, to work on.
  • I used lightest shade to highlight under the brow and also in the corners of the eyes, bringing it slightly onto the eyelid and under the eye too.
  • I applied the light shimmery brown “eyelid” shade (which is not as orange toned as it looks on my hand, more like a lovely shimmering bronze) all over the lid as suggested.

Then I changed it up slightly to create more intense, evening look.

  • I used the “crease” shade more so on the outer portion of the eye, as well as blending it across the entire crease,
  • Then I applied the definer shade in the outer crease, bringing it out and down along the outer side of the eye (in a “V” shape following the crease and down to the outer lashes.) and right down under the lower lashes. This gives a much more intense smokey eye, perfect for night time.
  • I instead used black liquid liner to create a small flick (I my own personal hero product, Rimmel Glam’Eyes Liquid Eye Liner). A tip I find really helpful in creating the perfect feline flick: apply your mascara before the eyeliner. Then, with your eyes open, create a small, one line flick going in the direction of your outermost lash. This really helps with getting the right angle to suit your eye. Then close the eye, lightly pull the skin taut (if needs be) and apply your liner as close to the lashes as possibly, eventually joining up with your previously created flick. Again, having mascara on already really helps in judging just how close to the lash line you need to get.
  • Finally, I some brown eyeliner along the water liner, so the looked stayed soft and smokey, and finished of with lashings of mascara on the lower lashes.

I have one word of advice if you are going to attempt a dark eye: blend. And when you think you’re done, blend some more! I always use a clean brush at the very end to make sure there are no harsh lines and the shadows blend together to create that ombre, smokey look. All you need then to finish it off is some light contouring, a good brow and a nude lip – a glam look for sippin’ on cocktails all night long! I am by no means an expert at make-up but it’s something I really enjoy – does anyone else find it’s the most fun part of a night out? In any case, this palette makes getting ready that bit more relaxing and enjoyable – I would highly recommend for smokey eyes experts and novices alike! Let me know if you’ve used this product and if you found it as handy as I did – would love to hear your thoughts!

Until next time! xx

Outfit Post: Autumn Layers

Leaves littering the ground? Sun beaming, low in the sky? Nip in the air? Check, Check, Check… Guys, I don’t mean to alarm you but grab your neglected winter woollies and the nearest cup of hot chocolate, because Autumn is here!

Autumn Leaves in Dublin

Dublin Ducks!

Topshop Tweed Coat, Primark Cable Knit Jumper and Grey Knitted Skirt

Coat – Topshop (Similar) // Jumper and Skirt – Penneys (Primark) // Necklace – H&M

Scarf – River Island (Similar) // Boots – Boohoo

Sunday was one of those perfect Dublin days…sunny and cold, with my man chum by my side. We ventured out for an afternoon jaunt in the park to admire the changing colours above out heads and under our feet. After stopping to feed the ducks, I must say we got  got a tad jealous of their gluttony and ambled in the direction of the nearest cosy pub for a most romantic…carvery. As I said on my Twitter, the heart wants what it wants… and a hungover head wants a gigantic roast even more!

Autumn Layers

Textures and Layers - Primark Skirt and Jumper, Topshop Coat, River Island Scarf

It was also a day that I decided, if I was going to fully commit to winter dressing from then on, I may as well go hell for leather…or wool to be more precise. I must say, I am quite content to pile more and more layers on as the weeks fly by and the air gets that bit crisper. Hence, my slightly Michelin Man-esque proportions in these photos…swathes of wool and a cocoon coat will do that to a girl. But I just adore the mix of textures here – the fine knit of the skirt; the oversized and chunky cable knit jumper and the grainy, knobbly material of this tweed Topshop coat. The coat itself is from two seasons ago, which speaks volumes about the benefit of investing money into outerwear (even if this was a cheeky gift from my boy!), in the fact it’s still in one piece and looks as relevant as ever in the grand scheme of this season’s coat styles. It also came with an utterly over the top, fabulous, detachable fur collar, one which I must root out of the ether on my next trip to my mammy’s house – perfect for adding that touch of old school glamour.

Lace detail on Primark Grey Knitted Skirt

The lace trim on this knitted skirt is a lovely finishing touch, and a nice nod to the slip style dresses that are so popular at the moment. I featured both it, and the jumper, in a recent Mix and Match post, so it seemed a natural progression to pair the two together. And with a subtle “half-tuck”, I think the proportions of this oversized knit and rather fitted skirt work really well together, particularly when the basic motivation to get dressed and leave the house was a gigantic feed – the forgiving waistband and cosy coverup was darn tootin’ good idea! I just absolutely love this this time of year…now, can someone remind me of all this seasonal enthusiasm when I’m moaning about my inevitably soggy socks and runny nose come January? Please and thanks!

I’d love to know what your idea of a perfect Sunday is, outfit and all – do let me know in the comments!

Until next time! xx

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